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The Bump & Run Defensive Back Training

By:   |   Jul 08, 2018   |   Views: 7   |   Comments: 0

Jamming a receiver at the line of scrimmage is a very effective defensive strategy. Known as the bump and run, the corner back lines up on the line of scrimmage and hits the receiver before he can start running his pass route. The goal is to delay the receiver and take him out of his pass route, disrupting timing pass plays. As a defensive back you need to learn how to bump and run. This article will discuss the basic skills needed to play the bump and run defensive coverage.


Defensive backs must have proper body position to be effective using the bump and run coverage. Body position begins using a well balanced stance that allows you to explode off the line, hitting the receiver before he can begin his route.

When you approach the line of scrimmage, make sure you are lined up off the receivers inside shoulder at a 45 degree angle. Position your feet less than shoulder width apart, this allows you rapid foot movement in any direction.

You want your arms loose with your hands waist high, in position to be driven upward and into the receiver's chest, driving him back, delaying his release from the line of scrimmage.

Keep your hips down, knees slightly bent and weight on the balls of your feet so that you are in position to explode off the line when the ball is snapped.

*Man to Man Coverage*

When man to man coverage is called, you want to line up on the inside shoulder of the receiver with your inside foot as close to the LOS as possible with your outside foot back and placing you at an 45 degree angle towards the receiver.

Your eyes should be locked on the receivers numbers, totally focused on him, so when he starts to move you are ready to make your hit.

*Zone Defense*

You want to line up on the inside of the receiver, placing your outside foot forward so that you are at an angle that will allow you see both the receiver and the offensive backfield.

*The Bump*

When you "bump" the receiver or jam him, you will use one of two techniques, the one handed jam or the two handed jam. Either technique can be effective, however you will generate more power using the two handed two handed bump.

*Two Handed Jam*

At the snap of the ball you must be stepping into the receiver and his first step. With your hands waist high you are ready to make your jam.

As you step into the receiver you want short steps to maintain your balance and be able to deliver a powerful bump.

With your hands open the palms facing the receiver, bring your hands up at a 45 degree angle. Hit the receiver in the pectorals. It is important you step into the receiver hitting him as you come forward. If you reach out, you will be out position and off balance rendering your hit moot.

*One Handed Jam*

Like the two handed jam, you want to explode of the line stepping into the receiver and his first step. However when you hit the receiver you want to use your inside hand hitting him in the pectoral and with your outside foot, take a bail step. This should have you perpendicular to the LOS, your back facing the quarterback and your shoulders facing the sidelines.

If you are playing a zone defense, you can jam the receiver and run with him if he still manages an inside release. Remember the outside line backers are covering the outside short zones.

If you are playing man to man, you must keep the receiver from getting the inside release, your only help is the sideline. Your outside line backers are either blitzing or covering the man assigned to them.


Not all jams will take the receiver out of the play; this is why you want your feet less then shoulder width apart and taking short quick steps. So if the bump doesn't work you can quickly recover and fall into pass defense

When you are covering the receiver you will start out in the trail coverage, ready to move into cut off coverage.

In the trail coverage you want to be lagging just slightly behind the receiver, yet close enough to make a play. Rule of thumb is you want to be close enough you could reach out and touch the receiver with one hand. Then you will be properly covering the target and ready to transition into cut off coverage.

The cut off position has you closer to the receiver, where you could reach out and touch his front with one hand. From here you will be able to make a play on the ball, knocking it down or making the interception.

In conclusion this gives you the basics of the bump and run defense. There is much more to this defense and there are instructional DVDS that can provide your more detailed training on the bump and run.

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